The WSWS continues to receive statements defending Dr David Berger and opposing the censorship of the Socialist Equality Party (Australia) Twitter account, which was locked for over a week, after it posted a video defending Dr Berger, Julian Assange and free speech.
Dr David Berger is a respected Australian physician and dedicated zero-COVID advocate who is being threatened with deregistration by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) over his social media condemnations of the government’s “let it rip” coronavirus policies.
We urge workers, young people and professionals to continue to speak out in defence of Dr Berger and freedom of speech. Since the publication of our first article on July 8, calling on scientists, health workers and other sections of workers to come to Dr Berger’s defence, the WSWS has published fifteen articles compiling statements of support, including from workers, students and professionals.
Statements of support can be emailed here. Please indicate in the email how you would like to be identified in our next article, and if you want to include a photo, please attach one to the email.
Steve, a construction worker from Sydney:
The attack on Dr David Berger is an attempt to suppress and censor any opposition to the government policies of letting COVID-19 rip throughout society.
He is being targeted because his opposition is medically sound and scientifically based. In contrast the government’s policies are not based on science or sound medical practice—the removal of basic public health measures and the reopening of society is to ensure that nothing affects the profit-making activities of corporations.
Dr Berger’s fight for zero-COVID represents the interests of the vast majority of people, the working class, whose continued suffering under the spread of COVID could have been prevented. He and other leading medical experts have made it clear the pandemic could have been ended, in six months or less, if governments around the world had implemented correct public health policies.
China is an example of how lockdowns work in stopping the spread. In New Zealand and Australia, the virus was previously suppressed through the implementation of public health measures, even though these were half-measures and semi-lockdowns. These experiences prove an elimination policy aimed at zero COVID can be implemented scientifically on a world scale.
The censorship of Dr Berger is part of worldwide trend to silence any voice of opposition to government policies, including opposition to the drive to war and the policies of austerity carried out against the working class.
Western governments claim they are fighting authoritarian regimes, such as Putin in Russia, yet they are threatening a doctor with a re-education program for calling out policies that have resulted in millions of infections and deaths! It is Orwellian.
Workers, professionals and young people should come to the defence of Dr Berger. AHPRA’s censorship is part of a broader attack on democratic rights and freedom of speech. This includes the continued and unrelenting persecution of Julian Assange, whose so-called offense was exposing the war crimes of the US government and its counterparts globally.
Vicki, from South Australia:
The treatment of Dr Berger is sinister, to say the least. Silencing a doctor’s views, and talk of a “special education program,” smacks of something out of a totalitarian nightmare. What is the government attempting to hide by this treatment?
Furthermore, a video in which Dr Berger featured, which was on the SEP Twitter page, led to the SEP’s Twitter account being locked.
I was outraged by this and attempted, within my capacity, to spread the message of this undemocratic act by Twitter. Although the Twitter account is now active again, it doesn’t change the way Twitter handled the whole affair. Twitter’s comments that they made an error still doesn’t answer what exactly they saw in the video as violating Twitter policy.
Personally, I don’t believe it was an error but clearly linked to the SEP’s continuous campaign to expose the government’s disastrous handling of COVID, as well as its betrayal of Julian Assange.
The SEP has supported Dr David Berger, a GP who has criticised the government’s “let it rip” policy on COVID, advocating an eliminationist stance. SEP Australia’s support of Dr David Berger is in line with the party’s consistent criticism of the government’s profits-driven approach to COVID, which is causing much suffering and sickness in the community.
The SEP’s description of the company as being “faceless, voiceless and uncontactable,” is correct, as well as their conclusion that this very fact makes it almost impossible to get complaints heard—if not completely ignored altogether.
This makes it even more urgent for workers to unite against the control corporations and government are beginning to have on our freedom of speech, and our lives.
Mary, health administration worker, Northern Rivers, New South Wales:
I am writing to condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the censorship undertaken by Twitter against the Socialist Equality Party by locking their Twitter account. This was an outrageous and desperate attempt by Twitter to silence the growing opposition being expressed to the social murder policies of capitalist governments.
Millions of workers are trying to find ways to defend themselves. Many of them expressing their efforts, rage, dismay, and fear on their Twitter accounts and are calling out for governments to do “something.”
In response, governments are imposing the unrestricted spread of the deadly SARS2-Covid-19 Pandemic on masses of people globally.
In Australia, the newly-elected Albanese Labor government is rapidly shredding any illusions workers had in them to fix this problem. Albanese has refused to call for even the most minimal of measures by refusing to implement a mask mandate to slow the spread of the disease, saying this would harm people’s “mental health.” Workers on Twitter are expressing intense anger, declaring their intention to never vote Labor again.
It is clear the pandemic, imperialist war, inequality and the climate catastrophe combined are the result of the collapse and decay of capitalism as a system. The capitalist class must be stopped. Workers are drawing the necessary conclusions, and Twitter is trying to prevent the development of this process. This is revealed in their restricting a video that links the struggles of Dr David Berger, Australian Medical Practitioner and advocate for zero Covid, with that of Julian Assange, persecuted publisher of WikiLeaks, and Lisa Diaz and David O’Sullivan, worker advocates from the UK.
The only way for the working class to survive is to take the power out of the hands of the current Oligarchs of the financial elites and fight for a planned world socialist society, where profits and individual wealth are subordinated to human needs.